Congolese filmmaker Djo Munga’s debut feature, Viva Riva! is a gory, fast-paced gangster movie that gives a unique insight into Kinshasa’s ruthless criminal underworld.
|Amanda Palmer and Viva Riva! filmmaker Djo Munga|
Rookie mobster Riva returns home from a trip abroad to discover the city is suffering from dire fuel shortages.
Sensing an opportunity, he steals a cargo of gas from Angolan gangsters and heads out to celebrate. That evening he meets the mesmerising Nora – the girlfriend of one of Kinshasa’s criminal top dogs – plunging him into yet more trouble.
Munga’s background in documentary-making is evident in the film’s frank realism, which exposes the Democratic Republic of Congo’s rampant crime, endemic greed and police corruption.
Djo Munga talks to Amanda Palmer, Al Jazeera’s head of entertainment, and the FPS studio audience about the experience of making Congo’s first feature film in decades.
A few years ago, veteran German director Wim Wenders set out to document the creative process of his long-time friend, the innovative dance choreographer Pina Bausch. Just before filming began, however, Bausch tragically passed away.
From the embers of this tragedy, Wenders decided to move forward with a completely different film, one that gathered remembrances of Pina by those that knew her, and, more crucially, to convey the essence of her astonishing work to a cinema audience.
He filmed Pina in 3D, and the result is surely the most visceral, exciting depiction of dance ever committed to celluloid. Wenders speaks to FPS about the emotionally gruelling process of honouring his departed friend.
The Devil’s Double
|The Devil’s Double|
Saddam Hussein’s elder son, Uday, was a man widely feared and loathed by the Iraqi people.
Famously cruel and violent, he had a reputation for raping schoolgirls and newly married brides, and reportedly once killed a member of his staff in front of a room full of party guests.
Latif Yahia attended the same school as Uday, and was noticed by the Hussein family for a particular trait – he looked a lot like Uday.
At the age of 23, Latif was informed that he was to become Uday’s body double. Refusal was not an option.
He underwent extensive training and plastic surgery to make their appearances more similar, and suffered numerous assassination attempts before fleeing to Austria in 1992.
Lee Tamahori’s The Devil’s Double explores Latif’s traumatic experiences in the inner circle of a regime from which he is one of the few survivors. FPS talks to Latif and British actor Dominic Cooper, who took on the challenging double role of both, Latif and Uday.
The Bengali Detective
|The Bengali Detective|
British director Philip Cox’s documentary The Bengali Detective explores a particularly Indian phenomenon – the rise of the private detective.
Set in the sprawling city of Kolkata, it focuses on affable Rajesh Ji, one of the thousands of private eyes filling in the gaps in India’s patchy urban policing.
Cox gains access to a range of Rajesh’s cases, from counterfeit shampoo sellers to a shocking triple murder.
But Rajesh knows how to let his hair down, and we also get a glimpse what sets his pulse racing after hours – amateur Bollywood dancing.
This episode of The Fabulous Picture Show can be seen from Friday, January 13, at the following times GMT: Friday: 1930; Saturday: 1430; Sunday: 0430; Monday: 0830.